The State Department is advising against cruising amid the COVID-19 outbreak

I love cruising, and I’ve been on dozens of cruises. But I definitely wouldn’t go on one right now as the risk of being quarantined is just too high. And that was my advice before the latest piece of coronavirus (COVID-19) news: As of this past weekend, the U.S. State Department is advising American travelers against cruise travel and “long plane trips.” (The Grand Princess, meanwhile, is expected to dock in Oakland today with at least 21 cases of COVID-19 onboard.) Here’s the full statement from the State Department’s website:

“U.S. citizens, particularly travelers with underlying health conditions, should not travel by cruise ship. CDC notes increased risk of infection of COVID-19 in a cruise ship environment. In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, many countries have implemented strict screening procedures that have denied port entry rights to ships and prevented passengers from disembarking. In some cases, local authorities have permitted disembarkation but subjected passengers to local quarantine procedures. While the U.S. government has evacuated some cruise ship passengers in recent weeks, repatriation flights should not be relied upon as an option for U.S. citizens under the potential risk of quarantine by local authorities.

“This is a fluid situation. CDC notes that older adults and travelers with underlying health issues should avoid situations that put them at increased risk for more severe disease. This entails avoiding crowded places, avoiding non-essential travel such as long plane trips, and especially avoiding embarking on cruise ships. Passengers with plans to travel by cruise ship should contact their cruise line companies directly for further information and continue to monitor the Travel.state.gov website and see the latest information from the CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/cruise/index.html.”

The situation continues to develop, but this of course is a pretty big step. Keep up with the latest on the COVID-19 outbreak on our resource page here.

More on the COVID-19 outbreak

 


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